Authorities Arrests Lanao del Norte Mayor for Violation of Gun Ban

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ILIGAN CITY (MAY  14) –  Authorities  arrested Mayor Jabbar D. Tago of Pantar, Lanao del Norte in a joint law enforcement operation for possession of loose firearms and violation of election gun ban.

The incident happened in the vicinity of Barangays Punod and Sundiga,  in the municipality of Pantar,  Sunday or on the eve of the barangay elections.

The raid  was conducted by the operating troops of the 4th Mechanized Infantry Battalion, Philippine Army, Scout Ranger Battalion, Military Intelligence Battalion and the Philippine National Police.

Pantar and six (6) others were arrested for violation of Republic Act No. 10591 or the Comprehensive Firearms and Ammunition Regulation Act

Arrested with the mayor are his brothers, identified as Janoding Tago and Jameloding Tago who have pending arrest warrants for murder.

Also arrested were Rehan Gumpal, Abdul Racmam Gumpal, Kiram Ampuan and Nasroding Lao.  Kiram is reportedly in the list of  high value target of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA)  in Metro Manila.

Col. Robert Dauz, commander of the 2nd Mechanized Infantry Brigade, Philippine Army, said the operation was conducted in pursuit of of the criminals responsible for the shooting incident in Baloi, Lanao del Norte on May 8 followed by another shooting incident in May 10 at the same barangay where the firearms were recovered.

Dauz said, a  brief  exchange of fires  ensued after the two persons  opened fire against the authorities, the suspects who were identified by the military as members of a local terrorist group  immediately scampered towards different directions.

Recovered from the area are 15 assorted high and low-powered firearms including a locally-made 50 caliber barret, barret sniper rifles, AK-47, M79 grenade launches and ammunition of M14.

On July last year, the Martial Law Special Action Group raided Jabbar’s house in Bonbon, Cagayan de Oro City where several guns were confiscated.

Four months ago, Tago was formally sworn in as town mayor after the Commission on Elections declared him the rightful winner of the 2016 local elections.

He replaced Pantar Vice Mayor Hadji Rakim Alingan who had been assumed the town’s mayor after Mayor Exchan Limbona was killed in an ambush on December 29, 2016. -Divina M. Suson/Newsline.ph 

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